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4 April 2014, 18:31
A man who shook a Birmingham toddler killing him in a fit of temper's been jailed.
Kieron was aged just 22 months at the time of his death, in June 2011 at a house in Denshaw Road, Kings Heath.
A post mortem examination confirmed that the youngster had suffered two serious injuries in the final weeks of his short life − a spinal fracture some three weeks prior to his death, followed by a serious brain injury in the final days of his life.
An investigation was immediately launched by detectives in Birmingham’s public protection unit and in May 2012 the child’s mother, Louise Barley, and her boyfriend, Craig Lewis, were arrested on suspicion of Kieron’s murder.
During a court appearance in February this year Lewis, aged 32, admitted Kieron’s manslaughter, whilst Barley, aged 26, admitted child cruelty.
Both appeared before Birmingham Crown Court today (4 April) - Craig Lewis was sentenced to 8 years in prison and Louise Barley received a 15 month sentence.
The court heard how Lewis and Barley spun a web of lies to cover their tracks after the two incidents in which Kieron suffered his injuries.
Lewis told police that the toddler, who had developmental difficulties, fell forwards when trying to walk, on 28 May 2011 − a lie that was exacerbated by Barley who claimed that she had been there, when in fact she was out and returned home later that day.
Just three weeks later Kieron was admitted to hospital after he had gone limp and stopped breathing whilst in the bath. MRI scans later showed that he had suffered subdural and retinal haemorrhages, which the court heard were likely to have been caused by shaking or an assault.
Detective Chief Inspector Dawn Miskella, from the force public protection unit, said: "This was a tragic and deeply upsetting case for all concerned.
"Young Kieron lost his life after Lewis admitted losing his temper on two occasions and assaulting him. Kieron was sadly let down by those who should have been caring for him.
"His mother and her partner spun a web of lies to conceal the truth of how Kieron came by his injuries and failed to seek further medical attention following the initial assault. However, almost three years on from the incidents Louise and Craig have finally admitted their crimes and have been jailed.
"We hope that the result can provide some closure for those who truly did care for young Kieron and are pleased that justice has been done. Our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time."